Hermann Haase: Various aquarelle depicting rural life, Vierlande near Hamburg, Germany, around 1900.
Courtesy of Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe Hamburg

It wasn’t just “foreign” cultures that Brinckmann was interested in: in light of the massive waves of urbanization and modernization in Germany at the turn of the century, he became passionate about documenting the traditional culture of the Hamburg countryside, which was threatened with extinction. He had a particular interest in the Vierlande area. Working with considerable dedication, he not only accumulated a stately collection of Vierlande cabinets, chests and traditional costumes, but he also commissioned in-house draftsman Hermann Haase, an extremely conscientious, even obsessive, watercolorist, to capture the material culture of the Vierlande area in images.